April 2015 was when we welcomed a new member to the family, our baby Aeary. It was but automatic that on that day forward, she becomes a part of every plans (including travel).
When we booked our flight for Japan (here’s a guide on how to apply for a Tourist Visa for Japan), I was so excited to the thought of having our then 7-month old baby girl coming with us. Of course, traveling with an infant is not that stress-free. We were too worried on what to bring, what to prepare, her crying the entire flight, getting sick because of the weather, and so on.
Weeks before our flight, we were busy searching insights on what traveling with a baby will be like and Google did not disappoint as we did get a number of tips and tricks that helped us along the way.
We’ve been getting messages from friends asking about my experience with how it was to travel with an infant. So, and as the title says, we’re sharing you tips on what to prepare when you travel with your baby.
The Essentials during the trip:
- If your baby is formula-fed, make sure you bring enough milk for the entire stay. If going to another country, research the brands available in the country and check if the milk your baby is accustomed to is available. If it isn’t find a better alternative.
- If your baby is breast-fed, always bring breast pump & breast milk storage with you as some places/countries may not be all to welcoming with you breastfeeding in public.
- Baby Diaper – Like milk, research for the brand your baby is used to using. For Aeary, there are brands that she develops rashes if we use it on her, so we try to avoid it.
- Anti-Bacterial Baby Wipes
- Feeding Bottles
- Pacifier and/or ear plug
- Babies’ clothes & bibs
- Medicine/First Aid Kit – this always come handy as you never know when you will need it.
- Baby food – You can buy jarred Baby Food in any stores if your baby will eat it. In my case, I brought frozen homemade baby food for Aeary. In some cases, the accommodation you have opted to stay in will have a kitchen, and for our case, we cook food for Aeary if a kitchen is available.
- Baby Carrier or Stroller – we will write a new blog post regarding which is best to bring if you were to choose one. For our part, we brought a stroller and carrier in Tokyo, then just brought the carrier in South Korea then did not bother bringing any on our Southeast Asian trip.
So, it is technically the basics but the secret is packing more than expected specially on milk and diapers, particularly when traveling to other countries. The brands your baby could be used to may not be sold on other countries. You would not want your baby to have allergies while traveling, right?
At the airport…
Please note that there’s a limit in amount of liquid that you can only bring and this depends on the airline. For AirAsia:
“Can I take infant formula/food in my cabin baggage?
Yes, however, you are only permitted to bring sufficient amount for the duration of the journey. Please take note of the restrictions imposed on liquids, gels and aerosols by the airport authorities.
Kindly be advised that AirAsia has no restrictions on handcarry of expressed breast milk, however different airports have different levels security screening and it will be solely up to the security officer to allow or restrict. it would be advisable to express breast milk inside the departure lounge.”
On our experience, we have been able to carry around 3 milk bottles with around 180ml each without any issues. Even bottles of vitamins/medicines can be in your hand-carried baggage which is not normally allowed if you are not traveling with a baby.
On Board the Aircraft
- Ear Pain – The changes in pressure on take-off and landing can cause ear pain. We’ve seen a number of babies cry on flights possibly due to ear pain. To ease the pain, breastfeed your baby or offer a bottle of formula milk or pacifier. You may also try to put an ear plug onto your baby’s ear.
Good thing for Aeary is she has never had issues with ear pain on our past flights. The only issue she’s had with takeoff and landings are the sound of the turbines which scares her (LOL).
- Changing nappies/diapers – Change your baby’s diaper before the flight. Over pack your diaper bag. It may be more to carry, but being extra prepared during air travel will go a long way.
- Feeding the baby in the plane – This has been the main concern by most first time moms – how often will you cope with feeding your baby, particularly if your baby is used to homemade food. If your baby is used to jarred baby food, then bring 2 or 3.
For babies who’s used to eating homemade food like Aeary, prepare and freeze homemade baby food. It’s better to thaw the frozen baby food and put it in a baby food container. Alternatively, bring foods that can easily prepare, such as avocados and bananas. Foods that can easily be mashed and served.
During the flight, your worst nightmare may and your endlessly cry. If this happens, just put on your thickest skin and ignore nasty looks and/or comments. Most of them will sympathize with you, but you may come across one of those less tolerant people and their unhelpful remarks.
When in Myanmar, you’d actually notice majority of the Burmese have a yellow patterns drawn or even just smudged on their faces, some even covering every inch of the skin their clothes are not covering. This is called the ‘Thanaka’, a yellow-white cosmetic paste produced by grinding the bark of the thanaka tree on a flat, smooth stone with water. Thanaka is valued as a sunscreen and as a beauty product that keeps the skin cool, stops oiliness, tightens pores, improves the complexion and adds a pleasant, soft fragrance to the skin. Our little Miss Congeniality, Aeary, wanted to blend in with the Burmese kids, so we asked them if she can have Thanaka too. #burma #thanaka #myanmar #bagan #travel #thewanderingcouple #aearysdiaries #southeastasia #travel2016 #travelasia #travelgram #instatravel #tourwithaeary #wanderlust
A photo posted by The Wandering Couple (@thewanderingcouple) on
So it is basically keeping your baby fed on time and avoid any health issues/allergies. Keep this in mind – your baby (her mood and health among others) dictates the pace of your travel, so if you want to enjoy the time together, keep your baby happy and healthy during the trip.
What’s the result of a happy baby while traveling? Beautiful travel pictures with the family. 🙂
Island Hopping in Krabi to Phi Phi Island today was underwhelming because the weather dictated it to be. The Andaman Sea was relentless and unforgiving and our boat captain may have thought that the speed boat was a tanker as he barelled through every big waves. As a result, 2 tourists puked their entire breakfast and the tour route was cut short because of the weather. #krabi #thailand #islandlife #family #thewanderingcouple